Helicopters will be at the ready on Tuesday as some Premiership clubs are deep in negotiations to sign players whom they believe will propel them to new heights in the second half of the season. Unfortunately, due to his ongoing tax evasion trial, Harry Redknapp will likely not get the chance to talk to reporters from the passenger’s seat of his car.
Although it has been a relatively quiet window so far, there are still deals to be made. Inevitably, some managers and executives will panic, while others will spend wisely. Here are five potential transfers to keep an eye on (listed in no particular order):
- Lucas Barrios to Liverpool, Arsenal, or Fulham: According to reports originating in Germany, Borussia Dortmund striker Lucas Barrios will be applying his trade in England by Tuesday. Liverpool are clearly in the hunt for a striker, with their sets also set on Napoli forward Edinson Cavani. Fulham may feel better about letting go of disgruntled strikers Andy Johnson and Bobby Zamora if they are able to sign Barrios. As for the Gunners, they are also looking to add depth up top behind Robin van Persie.
Recently, Barrios has found himself devoid of playing time in Dortmund. The 27-year old Paraguayan striker was a key component to the Dortmund side that won the Bundesliga title last season, but he has failed to score yet this season. Still, many Premier League clubs would love to have him in their squad.
- Kevin Doyle or Nikica Jelavic to Everton: David Moyes is determined to sign a striker before Tuesday night. Wolves’ striker Kevin Doyle has not been starting consistently, so he may make be a good fit at Goodison Park. Even though the Irish striker has only scored twice in 19 league appearances this season, Everton are desperate for an out-and-out striker, and Doyle fits the bill.
In the summer, a number of English clubs were interested in Rangers’ front man Nikica Jelavic. According to reports, Everton have already submitted an official offer for the 26-year old striker, who has 14 goals in the SPL this season.
- Michael Ballack to QPR: Mark Hughes is looking to make his imprint at Queens’ Park Rangers, and he could certainly do that by bringing Ballack back to West London. Bayern Leverkusen are willing to sell the former Chelsea star, who is nearing the end of his career at age 35. On Sunday, Ballack’s agent said, “If a club report an interest in Michael Ballack, then we are also willing to talk about the issue.”
It seems that only PSG have been linked with more players this winter than QPR. Looking to solidify their position in the Premier League, Rangers are also rumored to be after Hugo Rolladega, Danny Murphy, Sebastien Bassong, and more!
- Leandro Damiao to Tottenham: Spurs are interested in signing highly-rated Brazilian striker Leandro Damiao, but they may have to battle with PSG and Malaga for the Internacional player. Many players coming directly from South America usually have trouble adapting to the English game, especially in midseason. However, Damiao (only 22-years old) could really help Spurs in the long-run, meaning that he could replace Emmanuel Adebayor next season.
- Wilfried Zaha to Bolton: On Saturday, Owen Coyle revealed Bolton’s interest in Zaha, “I think there’s players out there, and Zaha is certainly one of them, that I think would enhance our club for years to come on a permanent basis, and there are one or two on a loan capacity I’d love to bring in before the deadline on Tuesday.”
At only 19-years old, many clubs view Zaha as an intriguing prospect. Crystal Palace will be reluctant to sell their young winger, but, given their financial trouble, it is likely that they will accept the money if enough is offered. Bolton may be able to buy Zaha now for relatively cheap and watch his talent (and value) grow over time.
Perhaps the relatively low amount of movement this January is partly due to the failures of Fernando Torres and Andy Carroll. Possibly, it can be put done to the incoming Financial Fair Play rules or unstableness of the Euro.
Even taking into account these factors, some questions will be answered by the end of Tuesday. Manchester City may finally be able to offload Carlos Tevez. Arsene Wenger may finally spend some money (probably wishful thinking from a Gooner). If I was betting man, I would put money on QPR as being the biggest movers and shakers on deadline day. It will take months and years to fully analyze the transfers that will take place between now and the deadline, but that’s the beauty of the transfer market. It’s unpredictable risk-taking.